The Kootenay Lake school board and their finance committee are seeking input to help guide decisions about the development of the 2014 to 2015 budget — all in an online process

Kootenay Lake seeking online input into next year’s school budget

You don’t have to leave the comforts of home to have your say on next year’s school budget.

You don’t have to leave the comforts of home to have your say on next year’s school budget.

The Kootenay Lake school board and their finance committee are seeking input to help guide decisions about the development of the 2014 to 2015 budget — all in an online process.

Until now, the board and finance committee has relied on input by stakeholders sitting around the discussion table. Superintendent Jeff Jones says this survey is about opening up a dialogue among that extends to the entire district.

“People want to share their voice,” he says. “It forms another perspective and enriches the process, I think.”

The call for input went out on Wednesday with a link to a Thoughtstream survey emailed out through schools and the District Parent Advisory Council. Jones said within two hours, 70 people had participated and as of Friday morning, there were just shy of 150 participants.

The Thoughtstream process (found at http://thotstr.ca/YfLDnkcTFLZN) has two parts. First people are asked to give thoughts and ideas on the 2014 to 2015 budget. Then, after the Friday, February 21 deadline, participants are asked to have a look at what others wrote and prioritize or rank the ideas.

Participation is anonymous with names not shared with other participants, the board or the finance committee.

While this is the first time the budget question has been thrown out to the public in an online format, Jones has been working toward engaging through technology since arriving to the district four years ago — first starting with school administrators and last staff had a new question asked weekly.

Jones says using technology helps to not only share information with the public, through websites, Facebook and Twitter, but also helps in seeking input from a wider population on a number of issues. Earlier this month, parents and staff were asked when they would like to see March break scheduled in 2015. There were about 800 responses from staff and parents.

“We recognize we need to reach out more broadly,” he said. “Although we have stakeholder representatives on each board committee — parent representatives, union representatives, principal representatives — people have still expressed to me they welcome the opportunity to voice their own opinions and give input.”

Using survey software such as SurveyMonkey and Thoughtstream, the public is brought into the boardroom

“We’re getting more effective at using digital technology,” said Jones.

 

Just Posted

Slocan Valley added to communities on flooding evac alert

Kootenay Lake is expected to reach flooding level in Nelson by Friday

UPDATED: Hwy 3 west of Creston remains closed due to mudslide

A detour is available on the Kootenay Lake Ferry, but commuters could see wait times

COLUMN: Making a wildlife smart community

David White writes how property owners can avoid conflict with nature

Police searching for Nelson man

Brent Mickelson hasn’t been heard from since February

Local police recognized for work

Eight officers were honoured for removing impaired drivers

VIDEO: After the floods, comes the cleanup as Grand Forks rebuilds

Business owners in downtown wonder how long it will take for things to go back to normal

Rachel Notley to skip premiers conference to focus on pipeline deal

Kinder Morgan has ceased all non-essential spending on the Trans Mountain pipeline project until it receives assurances

B.C. tech company will power Uber Elevate

Moli and Uber announce research and development partnership.

UPDATE: Woman dies in ocean accident near Tofino hours before daughter’s wedding

“We are so thankful to everyone who helped our mom.”

Olympian sues USA Swimming, saying it failed to protect her

Ariana Kukors Smith alleges her former coach Sean Hutchison began grooming her for sexual abuse at the age of 13

Defence minister thanks troops for B.C. flood relief work

Harjit Sajjan says not only was military response quick, support from locals has been ‘tremendous’

Couple survives being buried in mudslide on B.C. highway

The couple, from Saskatchewan, were en route to Nelson when a tree fell in their path

‘So grateful:’ Injured Bronco hockey player glad he’s alive, works on recovery

Ryan Straschnitzki was badly hurt in the accident: a spinal injury, broken ribs, a broken collar bone, and punctured lung

PHOTOS: Floodwaters rise and fall in Grand Forks

The flood-ravaged Kootenay-Boundary region begins to heal

Most Read